Monday, July 20, 2015

Johor Bahru - Elder Joshua Avery

Written by Elder Joshua Avery, serving in the Singapore Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Mandarin Chinese.

My new area of Johor Bahru (JB) is awesome! My first night here we had an appointment with a recent convert, and the senior couple (Elder and Sister Benson) are awesome and took us to this great nasi lemak place.

Thursday was interesting...we woke up to a phone call from a member saying she was going to the hospital and needed us right away. Elder Pearce and I rushed as fast as we could over there and were amused (and I admit, a little annoyed) when she explained the problem. She said she had a vocal chord problem and had been to the doctors yesterday, they gave her penicillin and cough syrup, but she said that the cough syrup had to be returned because it is sealed shut and impossible to open. I asked to see it and opened it with ease, but she still had to go to change her antibiotic because she is allergic to penicillin! She went to the doctors and they gave her a different antibiotic and she got upset because it was different than her previous pills (they had to be different or they would kill her!). She insisted she see a specialist, but we were finally able to convince her that the antibiotic was fine and she should at least try it. She then tried to take us with her so she could get an HIV test and see her dentist, but we declined because we hadn't even started our weekly planning and it was already well into the afternoon.

Friday we went to a Chinese member's home for a Hari Raya party. It was good to meet the branch. It was the most Chinese I have spoken in months! It was awesome.

Saturday we met with an investigator named M** and taught the Plan of Salvation. She has been trying to feel close to God but has not for years. Her family seems awesome, and I think they will be baptized someday.

Sunday we met the fiance of the lady with the vocal chord problem, and we taught him a lesson. He took two friends to church, but they all speak Punjabi so communication and teaching are very hard. They understand Hindi though, so I think we will be able to just have them read the Hindi pamphlets to learn.

I found this awesome quote by Ezra Taft Benson, "The old adage is still true that you sow thoughts and you reap acts, you sow acts and you reap habits, you sow habits and you reap a character, and your character determines your eternal destiny."

"As a man thinketh, even so is he (Proverbs 23:7)."

This week I wrote a vision for who I want to become this transfer and put it in a paragraph long affirmation. I memorized it so that anytime a negative or doubtful thought comes I can chase it out and replace it with my affirmation. I also repeat it first thing when I wake up and as I am falling asleep. It seems to be working already and feels like a great way to remember Jesus Christ and His Atonement as part of our covenants that we review everyday and renew every Sunday.

Things are going great! I love it here. This Elder Pearce is a different one than I thought it was, but he is awesome. He went to Brighton High and has served in East Malaysia his whole mission. His Chinese is good and he knows a pretty decent amount of Malay. He ran cross country in high school so I am always last when we go running ... :) We are staying with the Zone Leaders, Elder Lloyd and Elder Hanks. They are great and super on top of things. I blog stalked Elder Lloyd a lot before I came out, so it is funny to get to know him in real life.

The K** family from my last area got baptized this week!

Love you all,

Elder Avery

Music in Malaysia (July 12, 2015)

Make Me Look Shuai!  (July 27, 2015)